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Round and Round in City Squares

Round and Round in City Squares

Round and Round in City Squares

Round and Round in City Squares

You can’t help it. All new cities you visit, you’ll end up going round and round in their city squares.  A city square defines a city. During my travels, a few that have impressed me are Tiananmen Square in Beijing, Main Square in Krakow, Red Square in Moscow and Covent Garden in London. I invited a few serious travellers to share their favourite city squares. Here’s their take! 

Piazza San Pietro, Rome, Italy

Simone Lye|The Aussie Flashpacker

Round and Round in City Squares

One of my favourite squares in the world, and truly one of the most scenic city squares in the world is Piazza San Pietro in Rome. Rome is one of my favourite cities in the world and you will find Piazza San Pietro located directly in from of St Peter’s Basilicia in Vatican City. Whether you are admiring the square from afar, from above (top of St Peter’s Dome) or from the centre of the square you’ll realise what a truly remarkable place it is. Each time I have visited Piazza San Pietro it is always bustling with a mixture of tourists, locals and nuns/monks. The square is encircled by enormous colonnades and overlooked by 13 statues at the top of St Peter’s Basilica. The square also features two beautiful fountains, designed by Bernini and Maderno. Piazza San Pietro is a stunning and architecturally beautiful city square that has been the location of an incredible about of history in its time. This beautiful, scenic city square is one of the most visited in the world and is a must see on any visit to Rome.

Grand Place, Brussels, Belgium

Luke Marlin|AntiTravelGuides

Round and Round in City Squares

In the heart of Brussles, Belgium is one of the most beautiful squares I’ve seen: Grand Place. Incredible detail surrounds you on all four sides, the centrepiece being the Town Hall.

Round and Round in City Squares

On the opposing side is the just as ornate Museum of the City of Brussels. You could spend hours in this space just admiring the historic artwork that will hopefully survive many centuries to come.

Piazza del Campo, Siena, Italy

Wal Baldu|TouristsByChance

Round and Round in City Squares

Welcome to Piazza del Campo in Siena – one of the most famous throughout Italy (and Europe). What makes it so unique? It’s original shell shape. While we do not recommend you eat here (tourists traps), we do recommend an aperitivo or a gelato and do not forget the photos – and try one from each angle. For a great photo, stick around for the sunset – your photos will look amazing!

Piazza del Campo is dominated by the red Town Hall (Palazzo Pubblico/Palazzo Comunale) and its tower, Torre del Mangia. The Town Hall, as well as the Duomo of Siena, were built during the Council of the Nine (1286-1355), which was the greatest economic and cultural splendour of Siena. From the courtyard of the Town Hall leads to the Civic Museum and the Torre del Mangia, on top of which, climbed the 500 steps, you can enjoy a splendid view of the city. Truly one of the most scenic squares in the world!

Old Town Square, Warsaw, Poland

Lexie Lou|StepsToFollow

Round and Round in City Squares

Upon arrival to Warsaw I had no idea what to expect. I was informed by many people that Warsaw was nearly flattened in WWII so there would not be much to see in the terms of old historical architecture. While these people were not altogether wrong, I discovered that Warsaw is a stunning capital to Poland with some of the most beautiful mixtures of old and new architecture thus far. My favourite part of being in Warsaw was exploring the Old Town located through Castle Square. Completely blown away by the beauty that this reconstructed square holds, I didn’t think I would find anything else to match it. After getting lost down the streets of Old Town I found myself in the the most stunning and vibrant square I have ever seen. Old Town Market Square takes the gold for me in beautiful squares. Tiny and hidden from the less adventurous travellers, Old Town Market Square is a hidden gem of quaint, cozy and colourful and I quite enjoyed spending my afternoon here.

Place Massena, Nice, France

Barry Sproston|ToolsOfTravel

Round and Round in City Squares

While visiting France I had the opportunity to stay at the stunning city of Nice for a couple of weeks. Nice is the second-largest French city located on the Mediterranean coast. The full name of the city is Nice la Belle (Nissa La Bella in Niçard), which translates to Nice the Beautiful. The location of Nice includes Terra Amata, an archaeological site, which contains historic use of fire. Through the years, the city has changed hands many times. Its location has been of military importance and the port significantly adds to its maritime strength. When walking around many attractions catch the eye and visualise the beauty of this old city square. It’s not long before the colourful square and old buildings transform into the old city. This part of historical Nice curves round past Castle Hill and near to the scenic Promenade des Anglais. Like Italy, the streets are lined with tall households. The vibrant buildings are often up to five stories high and the old narrow streets are full of interesting cafes and boutique stores to explore.

Red Square, Moscow

Ajay Sood|Travelure

Round and Round in City Squares

Red Square defines ‘BIG’! The four sides of this square are marked by St. Basil’s Cathedral (the iconic onion domed colourful church that perhaps inspired Disney’s logo), the outer wall of Kremlin with Lenin Memorial smack in the middle, State Historical Museum that places evolved masonry amongst the premier art forms and Gum Departmental Store, a 242-metre façade, which is illuminated every evening!

The entry into the square is allowed only after 1pm but once it opens for public, the place is normally buzzing with people. Being here around sunset and beyond will surely delight the photographer in you!

If you have some more gems to add, please share in comments for inclusion!

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Travelove Series 7 – Spray Stockings

Travelove Series 7 – Spray Stockings

Travelove Series is about the smiles I have gathered during my travels. I consciously look for Travelove during my travels.

Travelove Series 7 – Spray Stockings

During my Beijing trip, I visited Temple of Heaven just around sunrise. I roamed around the sprawling Complex for the next few hours.

I marvelled at its magnificent architecture. I admired the well-manicured gardens. I took in the fascinating sight of groups of Tai-chi practitioners engaged in morning workouts.

Just before exiting the East Gate of this massive complex, I realised the ankle I had twisted earlier was acting up again. The pain was almost unbearable.

Near the exit, I came across a mixed group learning traditional Chinese fan dance. I went up to them to ask if there was a pharmacy nearby.

Travelove Series 7
Teaching Fan Dance

Our mutual ignorance of each other’s language made me resort to sign language. I gestured by rubbing my hands up and down my calf that I was in pain. For further clarity, I made groaning sounds. With my hand, I made a spraying gesture.

Like all good Chinese folk, few of them smiled, nodded and made understanding noises. One of them took great pains to give me directions through his hand gestures. After repeating the directions and getting a nod from him, I hobbled away in the direction indicated.

I walked out of the Complex, walked a couple of blocks, turned left, and came to a building that looked like a shabby mall. I made my way up to the 4th floor (there was no lift in the building) and found myself in the lingerie section.

Staring me in the face were some sheer stockings. And that’s when it dawned upon me that my sign language communicated ‘Stockings’ and not ‘Pain Relieving Spray’ to the kind man. Despite my pain I couldn’t help broadly smiling to myself!

Do you look for Travelove in your travels? To read more of my Travelove Series, click here.

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Travelove Series 2 – A Warm Smile and a Panda!

Travelove Series 2 – A Warm Smile and a Panda!

Travelove Series 2

Travelove Series is about the smiles I have gathered during my travels. I consciously look for Travelove during my travels.

Travelove Series 2 – A Warm Smile and a Panda

Another one from Beijing: I had asked my hotel concierge to mark out the Metro station nearest to the Beijing Zoo on a Metro map that was in Chinese language. I wanted to see a panda.

After alighting at the marked station, I felt lost as I didn’t know which exit to take and which way to head.

I stopped a young lady and asked her the way. She didn’t know English, but upon looking at the map, she realised where I wanted to go.

Without uttering a word, she took me by the arm and steered me out of the crowded station, walked through an underpass, crossed a street and took me right to the entrance of the zoo.

I profusely thanked her. She just smiled, turned back and re-entered the Metro station. I realised she had come out of her way just to guide me! I stood there in a state of shock, feeling warm about the awesomeness of human beings and how one discovers it in the strangest of circumstances!

Do you look for Travelove during your travels? To read more of my Travelove series, click here.

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Travelove Series 1 – Peking Duck

Travelove Series 1 – Peking Duck

Travelove Series 1Travelove Series is about the smiles I have gathered during my travels. I consciously look for Travelove during my travels. Here is the first post around that.

Travelove Series 1 – Peking Duck

I was tired and hungry after combing through the Hutongs in Beijing. I had walked, rode on rickshaw, walked yet again, gone to a Hutong resident’s house, visited the drum and the bell tower and had walked some more.

After navigating the maze called the Hutongs, I had finally managed to extricate myself to some semblance of civilisation I recognised. There was a mall across the bustling road and some humble shops and eateries on the side where I emerged.

I had wanted to dine on the world-famous Peking Duck the way locals had it. I spotted a restaurant – Beijing Roast Duck.

The name sounded promising. I went in and settled down. The young Chinese girl brought me the menu and left me to peruse through it.

I opened it to realise it was all in Chinese (language). Helplessly, I waved at the waitress. She could not understand my predicament. Somehow, sign language helped and she looked around and asked other guests if someone understood English.

A family of 5 had a young man who volunteered to help. And, I got my Peking Duck the way locals enjoy it 🙂

Do you look for Travelove during your travels? To read more of my Travelove series, click here.

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